Tricia Stringer is another talented South Australian that we have most definitely enjoyed supporting over the years. Her first release of the year is Something in the Wine and we are featuring it as a book club title in May. You can read what our members thought in a couple of days.
Hi Tricia, welcome back to Beauty and Lace. It’s been a while since we’ve spoken to you here at Beauty and Lace, and now you’re up to 11 books in 7 years.
Thanks for having me back Michelle. It’s great to have the opportunity to chat again.
The latest release is Something In The Wine, can you tell us a little about it?
South Aussie teacher, Keely Mitchell, is in need of a break and heads west for a holiday. Her best laid plans are sent awry by a medical emergency and instead of heading north from Perth she ends up in the south convalescing on a small family run winery in Margaret River. At Levallier Dell Wines, father and son winemakers, Euan and Flynn Levallier are at odds. Keely, who can see both are passionate about their beliefs, tries to stay impartial but she hasn’t reckoned with her strengthening feelings for Flynn. Along with interfering family friends and a rival in love she becomes embroiled in a situation she’d rather escape but she’s also fallen in love with Margaret River. Should she move on or should she stay?
What made you choose to set the book in the wine region of Margaret River?
I first visited Margaret River in 2005 and fell in love with the region. When that happens I know a story will develop and this one did. It’s also a really good reason to go back and visit again.
How much wine did you need to drink in the name of research for Something in the Wine?
I think you know me too well Michelle, I certainly sampled a few fine drops…all in the name of research of course. No-one does sauv blanc semillon (SBS) quite like MR winemakers.
All jokes aside, please tell us a little about the research required for the book and how you researched?
Research is very important to me and where possible I prefer first-hand experience, actually being in the setting, interviewing people who’ve had similar experiences to my characters or who know about an issue I’m exploring. I’ve had several trips to Margaret River and spent time behind the scenes at different wineries. I wanted to make sure the setting of living on a small family run winery in Margaret River was authentic. I asked lots of questions and did lots of tweaking to get it right.
Seven years on, can you yell us a little about how your writing life has changed over the years?
I’m always learning, both about the craft of writing and about how to manage all that goes with being a published author. I’d like to say I’m more organised but I’m not sure if that’s true. I’m always refining my practices. Certainly being able to write full time instead of squeezing it in around my previous work is much more rewarding and some things are easier with the hindsight of experience, but the basic task – writing the book – is still hard work, that hasn’t changed.
I recently read that you have two books releasing this year, how does that impact on your time with the actual writing being only the beginning of the process?
The two books were written over a couple of years and just happen to be coming to published life in the same year. I work with an excellent team at Harlequin and between us we’ve managed it. My yearly planner board is a kaleidoscope of coloured notes, -deadlines, sub dates, edits, tours etc. I wouldn’t recommend it as a yearly occurrence.
Do you have a favourite place to write?
My office – it’s four steps from the kitchen and the coffee machine. It was purpose-built with lots of bookshelves, a good desk space, everything I need at my fingertips and a lovely view over the garden.
Which release are you most excited for in 2019?
As each book comes to life it is a very exciting moment. Like being paused at the open door of a plane ready to skydive; the terror, the adrenalin rush, the excitement and the peace and fulfilment of giving readers some moments of enjoyment. That happens every time with each new book. At the time of release I am in the excitement for that book. This year I get to do it twice. I am probably an adrenalin junkie.
How widely are you touring for the release of Something in the Wine?
There is another book coming this year so I am pacing myself. I’m doing seven South Australian events and a few in store signings. All the details are on my website. www.triciastringer.com
What advice would you give emerging writers?
Keep practising, writing, learning, improving and keep your eyes firmly on your goal. If writing is what makes your heart sing, don’t give up. Every published author was an emerging writer once.
Available now from Harlequin and where all good books are sold.